Reclaiming space from partitions during installation Round 2

So with some great feedback and great suggestions from you, I’ve been iterating more on the partition resize screen for Anaconda. I started out by poking around with the visual design of the drag handles, and Robin had the idea to make the space between partitions draggable and to use a model where you only drag between two partitions at a time. I think it will make more sense to do it that way, at least in this iteration. Initially I wanted there to be a free bucket on the right side that would grow as you shrank the partitions, but I think that makes it a little confusing as to how you would re-grow that partition if you changed your mind. Non-intuitive in the manner that the affect of your dragging can be displaced by more than just the next box over and it might not be immediately apparent to you that you can grow your partition even though it isn’t immediately adjacent to a block of free space. Smooge had the idea that there should be a clear indicator of how much you can squeeze down a given partition, so now the partitions have a lightly-colored graph to …

Drag / resize handles

In my last post about Anaconda’s UX redesign, there were a couple of mockups that featured draggable diagrams for managing space on a disk, allowing you to shrink its partitions as possible: I’ve been thinking about the best way to make the partitions look draggable. They only need to be draggable horizontally; the mockup above shows a diagonal drag handle making it seem as if the space could potentially be dragged upwards as well as horizontally (it can’t.) I’ve looked around different UI patterns for this; it seems a lot rely on the mouse hovering over the area to be dragged and the pointer changing to indicate draggability. I’m not sure that’s enough; I think there should be more visual clues that something is draggable that don’t require you to mouse over them to determine draggability. So here are some mockups I did just experimenting with different looks; some are definitely more successful than others, I think. What do you think?

Rough thoughts on reclaiming space from partitions during installation

So there’s a path in the storage flow of the Fedora installer redesign where if you don’t have enough free disk space to complete an install right now, but you have enough latent space available in your partitions if you were to shrink them. We offer to let you shrink them to continue the install in this situation. (This is highlighted in yellow in the flow chart above.) A partition should be considered shrinkable if it has at least one 500 MB+ of contiguous space within a shrinkable partition (not HFS journaled, not VFAT, not EFI, etc. etc.). Here’s the screen you get should you end up in that situation: So we’ve been talking about what happens when you click on that ‘Reclaim space’ button. Tree list approach First I took a tree list approach. While I hate tree lists, my brain was hurting around the concept that the general ‘list of parent items on the left, click on one, and details about its children are present on the right’ pattern that I find everywhere in the GNOME UI is typically only used for viewing details and not acting on them. There are some cases where you can act on …

GIMP 2.7 for Photoshop Expatriates

Well, I got into a Photoshop vs. Gimp pissing match. Sigh. Lots of rich manure left behind in the aftermath. Why not try to plant a seed and grow a useful vegetable from it? So here’s a quick screencast (created using GNOME Shell’s built-in screen recorder with audio using a trick posted to GNOME bugzilla by my colleague Dan Allen) that shows how to do some of the things folks more used to Photoshop told me they wished they could do in Gimp. I also threw in a little demo of the Gimp Paint Studio plug-in that I’m in the process of packaging up for Fedora. Should you happen upon this and have questions about how to do other stuff you’re used to in Photoshop (or any bitmap tool) and can’t figure out in the Gimp, let me know and I’ll try to screencast it. With the new trick configured in my GNOME shell setup, it is so dead simple to do screencasts I’m looking for excuses to do more! UPDATE: Uh, the link to the video off of the thumbnail preview actually works now 🙂 Thanks to ‘k’ for pointing it out in the comments!

Gimp Cage Tool

I really love the cage transform tool in the GIMP. It was first developed by Google Summer of Code student Michael Muré in 2010 and finished by Gimp developer Alexia Death. It allows you to define an area within an image (in my case, the four corners of the whiteboard frame) and drag on those points to stretch the image out. For this whiteboard photo that was taken at an angle, this process resulted in a straightened-out image of the whiteboard. (I followed up with a Difference of Gaussians cleanup that Garrett taught me a while back 🙂 ) It’s a pretty magical tool. Give it a try!

A Linux user's Nook experience

About two years ago I first used the Nook app on Android. That was my very first foray into buying digital books. I’ve been trying to pare down my possessions in a manner Leo Babuta and Erin Doland would most certainly approve of over the past couple of years. A love of books doesn’t work so well with having few possessions. Digital books promise: You can read your book on a number of different devices You can travel light and have your entire library at your fingertips Your books won’t take up any physical space in your home Food, drinks, and fire won’t mean you don’t own a particular book any more. Even if you leave your device on the plane, you’ll be able to get your books back (well, maybe.) What stopped me from diving in head-first for a long time were some things that worry me about digital books: Buying a digital book in a format that goes out of fashion and no longer being able to read it (my well-worn and well loved Anne of Green Gables physical book I have had since I was probably 8 years old is still on my shelf, and I can …